27 February 2007

The Enclosure of the Starbucks Experience

Here's an insightful piece:

Let’s face it: a brand is all about creating a monoculture. It is all about efficiencies, bureaucratization of process, and the marketing of a single cultural image. It is all about carefully crafting an experience and then monetizing it. The commodification of experience is the polar opposite of what a commons offers. In this case, the market is trying to replicate that which only the commons can truly generate.

As more and more companies seek to emulate Starbucks, and to tap into the power of the commons, this paradox is one that will increasingly crop up. It hints, perhaps, that the commons simply does not scale.

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